We are just a few months into the 2021-2022 school year, have you been paying attention to the shift in behavior? Are you paying attention to the violence spilling into our schools?
What is Happening in Our Schools?
The answer is simple and complicated all at the same time. Schools are a microcosm of our communities. When our communities experience violence, this will inevitably spill into our schools. When community members are in distress, our children are also in distress and any challenges at home are extremely likely to develop into challenges at school. When we understand this it becomes obvious that we must approach school safety differently.
What is a School Safety Ecosystem
A school safety ecosystem involves the integration of multiple elements working in tandem to enhance situational awareness and increase opportunities to identify and evaluate potential threats. It then allows a school to direct the appropriate combination of resources to mitigate, isolate, or eliminate any potential or actual threat and implement emergency response protocols in a timely, efficient, and effective manner.
A school safety ecosystem also ensures a deeper level of planning should an incident occur. Post event, many things need to be handled appropriately and the only way to make that possible is to think ahead and plan for those needs such as;
Reuniting parents, students, staff, and loved ones as expeditiously as possible post event.
Keeping the parents, community, elected officials, and others apprised of the situation, including updates and emergency procedures.
Enhancing the overall incident management through information sharing and making informed decisions.
Assisting with emotional and mental health issues.
Establishing a foundation from which to build a long term, new normal, recovery strategy.
School Safety Ecosystem Basics
Safety begins with a commitment from the organizational leadership to a substantial school safety plan. Communication must begin at all levels within the organization and there must be strong policies, procedures, and accountability components included in the safety plan. Schools must plan for the most complex and significant events with training and practice, clearly defining all roles and expectations from day one.
Everyone has a part to play in school safety.
It is collaborative, identifying and including both internal and external stakeholders.
The ecosystem should make safety part of the school culture so that everyone owns it.
School safety begins by identifying your most significant threats.
School safety is a commitment to a substantial school safety plan.
School Safety should be part of the school culture.
How the NASCPC Can Help
Here at the NASCPC, we understand the pieces of the school safety puzzle and we know from experience how to join them together holistically. We offer our members educational tools for success and can further be involved with comprehensive plans to include:
Safety / Security Protocols
Unified Command Integration
Administration and Oversight
Members receive significant discounts on our consulting services and we are happy to provide a comprehensive consultation with your district or school to get started.
CLICK HERE for more information on becoming a member of the NASCPC or CLICK HERE to request a free consult with our professionals. We are all school safety and the NASCPC is here to guide you. Our proactive school safety methods involve strategies associated with identifying real threats and taking planned actions to prevent targeted acts of violence from occurring in a school setting.